The British are famed for having chips-with-everything. But it is hungry Chinese consumers who could really transform the chip industry – the silicon one, at least. That’s the view of Morris Chang, who this week told the Financial Times that Chinese demand would add billions of dollars to sales of semiconductors. The boss of TSMC – the world’s largest contract chipmaker – believes that Chinese demand for electronic goods could see the chip industry’s annual growth rate rise from 5% to 7%. Global semiconductor sales are expected to hit $290 billion this year. The FT points out that, over five years, those two extra percentage points translate to an additional $30 billion in revenue. Chang had previously estimated there would be 5% annual growth over the coming half decade, but “because of China I am revising my estimate”. One reason for his optimism: greater purchases of electronic goods in rural areas (see WiC53).
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